Being in the middle of a newly bloomed garden with cool breeze early in the morning nourishes our feelings. Spending time with little kids, who look like buds waiting to blossom, gives us the same kind of refreshment. These little flowers of our ummah can pour joy and happiness into our lives. Noisy chit chats, innocent giggles, messy acts and pure smiles bring tranquility to our hearts.
Subhan Allah, kids are an amaanat from Allah . They are but a trust from Allah and we should handle them with extra care. We, as guardians, will be questioned about how we exercised our responsibilities while taking care of our amaanat.
The Messenger of Allah said: Each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for his flock. The amir (ruler) who is over the people is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock ; a man is a shepherd in charge of the inhabitants of his household and he is responsible for his flock ; a woman is a shepherdess in charge of her husband’s house and children and she is responsible for them; and a man’s slave is a shepherd in charge of his master’s property and he is responsible for it. So each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for his flock. (Abu Dawood : Book 20, Hadith 1)
Once, I happened to be with a group of “buds” around me, all around five years of age. We had a lot of fun. No matter what question I asked them, they were brave enough to give an answer with whatever little knowledge they had. They were not reluctant to answer and they never hesitated to say a big “NO”, showcasing their denial.
When they were asked about crayons, shoes, fancy hair clips and candies; they enthusiastically answered. When I asked, “Who is Allah?” I saw happiness vanish from their faces. They started taking a few steps away from me. Some of them were too scared to finish chewing their candies in their mouths. I was wondering what could have gone wrong.
And then came a little boy, Aflal. He took my palm and placed his little, soft palms in between. I gave him a hug to make him feel comfortable and waited for him to pour his heart out. He said “Allah is…. Allah burns us.. and punishes us… ummm…… He puts us in hell…”.
I could not believe myself. Who could teach something like this to these little hearts. I could not stand what I heard. Without further delay, others joined him. They opened their eyes widely, lifted their eyebrows and explained how Allah punishes kids who lie, who do not eat food, who bring their lunchboxes filled with food back home from school and who do not finish their homework.
Yes, I got the point. I understood that the tool some parents used was to terrify their kids with Allah’s punishment and hellfire to frighten them. When things went out of their control, they scared their kids by introducing Allah , saying He is rude, He is not good, He punishes, He hurts, He burns people in hell, etc. They felt they could control these little hearts for a short period of time, but they did not realize the dangerous consequences they would have to face because of this senseless act. Most parents have failed to understand that they have been committing a sin by telling lies about Allah .
Acquiring wrong information about Allah during childhood can cause spiritual traumas that are dangerous for kids and adolescents. They may start to see Allah as a negative threat to their lives. To avoid this perilous and unhealthy spiritual condition, we should stop misinterpreting Allah’s attributes and start introducing Him to kids in a way He should be introduced.
بِسْمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحْمٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
“In the name of Allah , the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful.”
Also it is recorded in a hadeeth,
The above two examples are two of the easiest and simplest evidences which support the fact that Allah is merciful without a doubt. Allah is Just when it comes to both rewards and punishments. We do not have any rights to create a false image about Allah’s attributes. It’s time parents acquired authentic knowledge about Allah , so they don’t end up corrupting the pure Fitrah of their progeny.
Parents, teachers and guardians should collectively realize that every kid has a right to know about Allah and thus, their primary education about Allah should be authentic. Our inculcation should be efficient and effective enough to reform our kids as brilliant Muslims, who turn to Allah first and then, to the rest of the creation, for their needs.